Main Character: Las Vegas
Name Diebenkorn (D.B.) Russell
Gender Male
Family Barbara Russell (ex-wife)
Greer Latimore (girlfriend)
Maya Russell (daughter)
Charlie Russell (son)
Two unnamed children
Kaitlyn Russell (granddaughter)
City Las Vegas
Job Crime scene investigator
Rank Director of Next Generation Cyber Forensics
Status Alive/Retired, 2016
Portrayed By Ted Danson

Diebenkorn[1] "D.B." Russell is the former night shift supervisor at the Las Vegas Crime Lab.[2] He was brought in by Conrad Ecklie in order to straighten the team out.[3] In 2015, he was hired by Avery Ryan of the FBI Cyber Crime Division as the Director of Next Generation Cyber Forensics, leaving the Las Vegas Crime Lab in the hands of Sara Sidle who left it to Catherine Willows. At some point he also got divorced from Barbara Russell.[4]

He retired from the Bureau in 2016 after being shot in the line of duty.


According to the press releases, Russell had previously headed a crime lab in Seattle, Washington. According to the show's producer, Carol Mendelsohn, he is married and has children. It's mentioned that he is well-known for catching a serial killer known as the "Gig Harbor Killer" (presumably Gig Harbor, Washington).[2] In Freaks & Geeks, Russell mentions that his parents were singers.  

Russell has a more comedic side than Grissom and Langston but is equally smart. He also cares much about his team, often acting as a "father figure," treating them like family. For example, in the episode Ms. Willows Regrets when Catherine's friend was killed in an ambush, he gives Catherine advice to simply "walk away". He then saved her life in the same episode when Catherine came under fire by mercenaries. Russell keeps his team in order and in the loop by having what he calls 'family meetings'. 

While Russell is usually pretty laid back, and generally does not have strict rules about how things are run in the lab; he shows plenty of dedication to his job, even sacrificing family priorities at times (including his wife asking him to quit, and move back to Seattle, when she became concerned that the job was "getting the best of him"). Despite that conversation, he cares very much about his family, making an extensive effort to support them. Even though he's not one for a strict set of procedures, he still manages to get the cases solved, which is a combination that makes him a unique character.

Season Twelve[]

Russell arrived in the Las Vegas Crime Lab after he was called upon by Conrad Ecklie to help organize the team after the recent inquest of Raymond Langston's murder of Nate Haskell. Catherine was demoted due to her poor leadership as was Nick Stokes. Therefore Russell had the large task of boosting morale within the team and bringing them back on track.

On his first case with the team, they all noticed his obscure and eccentric personality and way of solving cases, however he always managed to solve the case. Nick and Catherine still had bitterness towards him due to Russell just coming in and taking control, however through the cases they all warmed up to him and the CSI team began to work well with each other once again.

In Ms. Willows Regrets, Catherine appears to be the target of a group of mercenaries; known as the Hit Squad. Unknown to her they were hired by one of her friends. They attack her in her house but she manages to escape due to Russell's picking her up in his SUV and making a break for it with her. The CSIs eventually capture the mercenaries but Catherine decides to take a job within the FBI. Leaving Russell and the team saddened and without an assistant supervisor.

In Tressed to Kill, Russell tangles with Dr. Bill Ryan, a serial killer with a hair fetish who killed a woman he swore to protect along with three others. He eventually apprehended him, but he needed solace from Catherine after Dr. Ryan had a mental effect on him.

He then needed help on an unusual case involving lots of blood splatter, so he drafts in the help of Julie Finlay, who helps him solve the case. He then offers her the position of Assistant Supervisor, which she accepts.

Later, he and the rest of the team then come into contact with Jeffrey McKeen who is believed to be using his son to commit certain crimes from within prison. Ecklie and Russell track him down but it ends with a stand-off between Ecklie and McKeen's son, who Ecklie shoots. Since Russell was there and taunted McKeen about his son's death, McKeen ordered his men to kidnap Russell's granddaughter and shoot Ecklie.

Season Thirteen[]

After discovering that Kaitlyn has been kidnapped and Ecklie has been shot, he receives a call from Finlay, she says she is on a date with Officer Michael Crenshaw and Russell tells her that she should be wary of him.

He confronts McKeen, who tells Russell that Kaitlyn and Finlay are being held for ransom after Crenshaw locks her up with Kaitlyn, as Crenshaw was working with Officer Paul Kimball under the payroll of McKeen. However at this time, Finlay manages to free Kaitlyn. Detective Moreno, along with the rest of the LVPD, arrive and end up killing Crenshaw and saving Finlay but Kaitlyn has once again been taken by Kimball.

The rest of Russell's family returns to Las Vegas as they worry for Kaitlyn. In the meantime, Russell imagines killing McKeen out of rage, which worries Finlay and the rest of his family.

Eventually they manage to track down Kimball, who attempts to commit suicide but is stopped by Brass. They then find Kaitlyn alive and Russell uses his connections to send McKeen to a federal prison where he will spend the rest of his life in isolation.

Season Fourteen[]

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Season Fifteen[]

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As Russell prepares to leave the Las Vegas Crime Lab, he allows Sara to run the investigation into the bombing at the Eclipse Hotel. During the case, he provides support on the cyber forensics aspect of the investigation.[4]

CSI: Cyber[]

In 2015, Russell transferred to the FBI, and was appointed Director of Next Generation Cyber Forensics of the Cyber Crimes Division.[5]

After meeting and falling for Greer Latimore (Kelly Preston), D.B. announced his plan to resign from the FBI and join her in Paris. That afternoon, he was shot and wounded by Elijah Mundo's stalker, Nina Moore, whom he killed in the shootout. Four months later, it was revealed that D.B. was alive and living "happily ever after" with Greer in Paris.


CSI:Crime Scene Investigation
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 #
Season 12 X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X N/A 22
Season 13 X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X N/A 22
Season 14 X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X N/A 22
Season 15 X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X N/A 20
Total 86
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 #
Season 2 X X X X X X X X - X - X X X X X X X N/A 16
Total 16
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 #
Season 9 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - X - - N/A 1
Total 1


  • Grows "Magic Mushrooms" (Psilocybin mushrooms) in his office, apparently (or allegedly) for medicinal purposes.[2]
  • Lost his virginity to his ex-wife when he was a freshmen in college.[6]
  • His full name seen on an envelope at the end of Seeing Red is DieBenkorn Russell
  • Has been saving his children's' old band-aids over the years[7]
  • His favorite cookies are oatmeal with raisins[8]
  • D.B.'s wife, Barbara Russell, is played by Peri Gilpin, who previously had a main cast role on sitcom Frasier, which was a spin-off of Cheers, on which Ted Danson had a main cast role. Though the series are connected, their characters only met in one episode of Frasier.
  • He has some knowledge about mushrooms.[9]
  • He is a Grateful Dead fan.[10]
  • He likes mystery fiction; his favorite book is The Thin Man.
  • He is a longtime friend of Mac Taylor, the head supervisor at the New York Crime Lab and one of the protagonists of CSI: NY (In Vino Veritas).


In Crime After Crime, "It's a scene, not a date!...you wacky kid" to Greg Sanders after D.B. asked Greg Sanders to help Morgan Brody in a crime scene at a motel.